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Feb 06 2005 - EVEI Media

Fresh from their success at the World Championship, Australia, winners of the team Silver Medal, have six invited riders competing in 2005 HH Presidents Cup in Abu Dhabi.

The husband and wife team of Peter and Penny Toft were members of that successful team. Peter, on his famous Appaloosa Electra BP Murdoch, finished 11th in a ride time of 08:10:15. His wife Penny suffered the ultimate blow as her horse Harriet was a eliminated lame after the finish. Both the Tofts will be riding horses from the Al Reef Stable of HH Sheikh Tahnoon Bin Zayed Al Nahyan but as Penny commented. 'The horses we will ride came from our yard in Australia, Peter and I have competed on them before and trained them before they came to Al Reef who we have been associated with for several years.' Penny finished seventh last year on one of these horses Phantasm, she also rode in the inaugural Presidents Cup in 2000.
Penny Toft
Images by Gilly Wheeler

Toft endurance not only trained and owned five of the Australian squad horses but also the five horses ridden by the South Africans, five of the ten horses finished, three of which won the silver medal for Australia. The Toft duo have ridden all over the globe, one of Peter's finest achievements was to fly Electra BP Murdoch across the other side of the world to compete in the 2003 Tevis Cup in California and to finish 4th the highest placed foreign horses in the history of the Tevis.

Penny Toff was in the Australian Team that won Gold in the 2000 and Bronze in 2002 World Endurance Championships. Both times she rode Bremervale Justice whom McGaffin rode here in Dubai.

Peter Toft
Images by Gilly Wheeler

The other successful Silver medallist, Kristie McGaffin, finished 18th on Bremervale Justice owned by Peter Toft and bred by his mother who has a famous Arabian Stud, Bremervale, which is located close to Brisbane the capital city of Queensland Australia.

In the Presidents Cup, McGaffin, who celebrated her 21st birthday on the day on the World Championship, will be riding Tierview Maverick. This 7yr old Anglo Arab gelding bred in Tasmania is owned by Meg Wade and Chris Gates Castlebar Endurance.

The Castlebar Endurance also is the home of Nashimi, the mount HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid rode on his medal winning World Championship recently. Nashimi also won the HH President's Australian Challenge in May 2004, ridden by McGaffin. McGaffin was also a member of the Australian Bronze medal team in 2002.

Kristie McGaffin
Images by Gilly Wheeler

Meg Wade who competed in the 2000 HH President's Cup, is another of the Australian entry this year. Ms. Wade is riding her homebred stallion Castlebar Khalifa, whom is used extensively as a sire at Castlebar. He won the Middle Weight division at a 160km ride and the award for best Condition in Australia in December 2004. Wade has been on the Australian World Championship squad every year since 1994 in Holland when Australia won a team Bronze medal. The team also won bronze in 1998 and 2002, where she achieved her best individual World Championship result finishing fourth.. On home soil she has been the National Champion for the last seven years.
Meg Wade
Images by Gilly Wheeler

Another of their homebred horses, Castlebar Kadeen, is being ridden by Claudia Reid who is part of the family business Ningadoo Arabians who have bred many successful endurance horses. These include Ningadoo Baqi who finished 4th in the 2003 Presidents Cup for Al Reef's Dr Jaber Bittar and Ningadoo Justinian purchased by Al Wathba. Reid has been riding endurance for the last 14years and has finished in the top five four times over 160km.
Claudia Reid
Images by Gilly Wheeler

The final member of the Australian squad is Joyce Corbett the dual winner of last year's 160km Tom Quilty, the most famous ride in Australia. Corbett made the 23rd flight alongside her winning Quilty horse, the 11 year old mare Reflex whom she bred herself. She has owned both the mares' mother and grandmother. Corbett started endurance 30year ago but had a 10 year break while her three children were young. Over the last two years she has ridden seriously and the Quilty win was the premier success of her career. This is the first time she has ridden overseas.
Joyce Corbett
Images by Gilly Wheeler

The Australian horses arrived last week.

The 2005 HH President's Cup event is sponsored by Omega, Emirates Call, United Design, Paris Gallery, Abu Dhabi Commercial Bank, Mercedes, Bovis Lend Lease, and Max Group.

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